Morgan Hill Agriculture Mitigation Policy By Leslie Little

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  • 1. Morgan Hill’s Agriculture Mitigation Policy
  • 2. Morgan Hill’s Agriculture Mitigation Policy History: Began with policies established in 2001 Comprehensive general Plan Amendment  Open space policies to protect agricultural uses and foster long term agricultural industry  Desire to ensure mitigation close to Morgan Hill, in the SOI  Understanding that incentives may need to be provided to encourage ag production Introduction to the Agriculture Mitigation Policy  Morgan Hill’s SOI includes approx 10,000 acres of agricultural and grazing uses: 7,463 grazing, 438 farmland of local import, 174 unique farmland, 227 farmland of State import, 1679 Prime farmland (FMMP Maps).
  • 3. Goals Identify lands viable for long-term agriculture Develop a program that fosters long-term agricultural production via land use planning, agricultural preservation policies/programs and mitigation Encourage the retention of agricultural activities and minimize conflicts in the transition from agriculture to urban uses
  • 4. Challenges identified through public input Cost of Land near urban areas Cost of Water Farming/development interface Size and shape of parcels conducive to viable production Aging Farmers and inheritance issues Underlying, existing development rights
  • 5. Opportunities Many ag properties in large ownership and existing Desire to farm Create mitigation easements Provide incentives for preservation Use land use policy to protect active agriculture and create large, active ag properties Use development agreements to implement incentives
  • 6. Agricultural Policy Consultants House Agricultural Consultants – Davis, CA EPS (Economic Planning Services) – Berkeley, CA
  • 7. AgricultureMitigationPolicy Current Status
  • 8. Current Status of Work Policy Release Dec. 22, 2011 Meetings with interested Parties: LAFCO, Greenbelt Alliance et. al., SC County Farm Bureau, Property owners and agricultural tenants www.morganhill.ca.gov – Agricultural Policies
  • 9. AgricultureMitigationPolicy How to get engaged
  • 10. Get Engaged Review and provide comments regarding the Draft Agricultural Policies. Attend one or many meetings that are being scheduled with key stakeholder groups regarding the policies Become familiar with the City’s Slow Food Policy Become familiar with the City’s Right to Farm Ordinance Develop ways to enrich Farm to Table Economic development initiatives Develop ways to increase Farm Trail visibility Look for grants to assist with healthy eating, lifestyle programs and education projects that could enhance and support an active conservation area Buy local produce
  • 11. AgricultureMitigationPolicy For more information contact Rebecca Tolentino, Senior Planner – rebecca.tolentino@morganhill.ca.gov